How to behave in a restaurant

From the forever “soon to be published” upcoming Middle of Nowhere self help book titled “Self Help for the Sensitive New Age Moose”

How to behave in a restaurant.

It is inevitable to anyone who wishes to have any sort of social life that they will soon find themselves in a restaurant. For the uninitiated this can be a daunting experience. But do not fear. You can get through it. You only need to follow a few simple steps and before you know it you’ll be restauranteering with the best of them!

Meeting the host.

The first person you will see is the host. Normally this will not be your waiter. He will show you to your table and bring you your menus. The first thing he will ask you is how many people will be joining you that evening. This is so he can find a table suitable for your group. When he asks you it will be normally phrased in question like “How many?” or something to that effect.

Suitable responses you can use include 1, 2, 3, 4, 87 etc. The best option would be to reply with the number of people who will actually be joining you. Unsuitable responses could include I’ll have the chicken curry or could I have the bill thanks.

After you have been shown to your table the best option is to sit down. Standing on the table and shouting “Turnips are not your best colour!” is not an option I would recommend taking at this point.

Deciding on your meal

Once seated with your menus it is time to decide what you want to eat. Take your time. Pick something you actually want to eat. Remember, if it is not on the menu in all most all circumstances this means you cannot eat it tonight. Don’t let this upset you. You can always eat more food when you get home, or failing that, a different day. Consider the price. Don’t order the extra side of potato skins unless you are really ready to face the consequences of this action.

Gentlemen, if you are on a date, you may wish to impress your partner with your extreme knowledge of fine foods by ordering for her. This is not a game. Try to order something she would like not something you think will cause her to run to the bathroom in disgust. It may be funny at the time, but beware, this course of action will probably ensure you will not get lucky tonight.


The waiter/waitress will now take your order. It is important to ask for what you actually decided you were going to eat that night. If you want spaghetti, but order a plate of stuffed olives, don’t expect the waiter to read your mind, it is a skill very few waiters are equipped with.


The next section in this book is on table manners, but in brief, when the waiter brings you your meal it is time to eat it. Putting it through a paper shredder may seem like a good idea now but it will probably only result in a broken paper shredder and a long awkward pause.


Once you have eaten you have to pay for the meal. “Pay for the meal!” you ask, but unfortunately you are not at home enjoying your mums home cooking and the restaurant staff have usually gone to great trouble to prepare your meal and it would only be fitting that they receive some sort of monetary compensation for their effort.

However if you insist on not paying then don’t despair, there are some ways of getting out if it:

  • Teach your self to vomit on demand. Tell the waiter you didn’t think the chicken was properly cooked then vomit on him in a timely manner.
  • Place a hair in the food. The more hairs the merrier and better chance of avoiding the bill.
  • Set the restaurant on fire, the ensuing chaos should be a big enough distraction to allow you to slip away unnoticed.
  • If all else has failed it is time to get on your high horse. Start accusing everyone of being against you. Play the race card. Say you were deliberately given a bad meal because of your race. Tell them they are overcharging everyone. Say that the last three patrons were allowed to leave without paying because they knew the waiter who served them. The louder and more obnoxious you get the better. Place your head in other guest’s food. The more rude you get the more likely you will be quietly asked “Please sir could you leave, you are making a scene.”

Equipped with these pointers, you are now ready to face your fears and go to a restaurant. If you get into trouble, don’t panic! Just calmly collect your thoughts, turn to the person next to you and politely ask, “Excuse me sir, but I believe I ordered the herring pie.”


  1. Posted 27 July 2006 at 12:08 pm | Permalink

    Ahh yes, the MON Self-Help book. We really should publish this! We’d be richer than John Smith the Fourteenth!

    It would out sell the Guinness Book of Records, The Bible and The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy combined!

  2. Posted 27 July 2006 at 12:13 pm | Permalink

    Ah, before we think about publishing, we might consider writing the damn thing!